Tulsa’s Hidden Gems

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Categories: In Our Communities

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Tulsa Rock and Mineral Show 2016 Chairman Finis Riggs shows careful skill and technique in working with minerals.

Join the Tulsa Rock and Mineral Society for their annual Gem and Mineral Show at the Tulsa County Fairgrounds on July 9 and 10. The show serves as the organization’s largest fundraiser, supporting educational and enrichment programs for the community.
The weekend-long exhibit provides an opportunity to experience the beauty and history of the world. It also brings together vendors and rock lovers from across the region, offering choice specimens of gems and precious stones, jewelry and related crafts and artifacts.
“We should be expecting around 20-25 vendors from everywhere from California to Florida,” said Tulsa Rock and Mineral Show 2016 Chairman, Finis Riggs.
Riggs first developed a love of rocks and minerals when a friend showed him the lapidary shop at Oral Roberts University, where he learned how to cut rocks and make his own jewelry pieces.  He admits that he’s found a new passion and doesn’t plan on giving it up anytime soon.
“My favorite thing to work with is geodes,” he says, “because you never really know what you’re going to get until you cut into it to find out.”
A special feature of the show this year will be a beautiful opal display from Australia. The dealer will even have some of the items for sale. Competitive displays of minerals, fossils and jewelry will be judged with prizes awarded to the winners.

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Displays wil be shown from across the country.

Each month, the Rock and Mineral Society meets at College Hill Presbyterian Church, located near the University of Tulsa at 712 S. Columbia Ave. Meetings begin 6:15 p.m. on the second Monday of every month. Visitors and children are welcome. There is a different display every month for people to observe and enjoy.
Whether the rock was found along a trail or digging into the side of a mountain, it always feels special when one makes a discovery. Even when the rock is purchased or passed on from person to person, there’s always an element of thrill when you lay eyes on the piece for the first time.
At the show, plenty of activities will educate and entertain young and old. A free kids’ zone will feature hands-on opportunities to dig for gems, as well as demonstrations and other fun stuff. There will be a working demonstration by club members going on for everyone to see all the different things you can do with rocks in a lapidary shop. There will also be a booth where attendees can cut and polish their own gems.
Admission to the Gem and Mineral Show is $6 for adults. Two day passes are $10. Children 12 years and younger (accompanied by a paying adult) are free. Scouts, military members, police officers and firefighters in uniform receive free admission. The show takes place at the Exchange Center at the Tulsa County Fairgrounds. Show hours are Saturday, July 9 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, July 10 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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